When life gets really busy it can feel like you’re always catching up on your to-do list. Even when there isn’t much going on, your mind may default to a pattern of restlessness.
For greater mental clarity, it’s important to develop your practice. Here are 4 strategies to help you manage a restless mind:
1. Limit Time Spent On Social Media
When our minds are tired, we often turn to social media for a break. After a long day, it seems like an easy way to entertain and recharge ourselves. The only problem is that social media has the opposite effect.
When our minds are tired, turning on social media actually perpetuates the problem by creating more internal noise. This mental clutter makes it difficult to calm down. Instead, try replacing time on social media with different activities such as going for a walk, listening to music, reading a book, or meditating. The goal is to keep it simple and clutter-free.
2. Write Your Thoughts On Paper
Writing your thoughts and feelings on paper is very therapeutic for a racing mind. Your writing doesn’t need to be an essay or an English paper. Free feel to make spelling mistakes and don’t worry about proper sentence structure. Your only goal is to write about anything that’s on your mind.
You’ll be amazed by the clarity that this simple act of writing can bring. If you try this out, we recommend actually using a pen and paper. It’s proven that writing by hand has a whole host of health benefits. Stress-relief is just one of many. Not to mention, this is a great opportunity to get away from your screen.
3. Take Action
You can overcome the cycle of over-thinking by taking action. Start by engaging one of the thoughts that’s on your mind. Thoughts like: “I haven’t started my taxes” or “it’s been too long since I called my mother” or even “I want to start exercising.” You can ease these thoughts simply by acting upon them.
Often, it’s unfinished tasks that lead to racing thoughts. The thing is most of these tasks only take an hour or less to complete. These quick tasks in life are under your control. Tending to them is one of the best ways to ease a restless mind. There really is no time like the present.
Of course, we couldn’t leave this one out! Meditation has an effective and long-lasting capacity to calm the mind. By cultivating awareness of your thoughts, it’s easier to identify the restless ones. Next time you’re feeling scattered, try sitting down for a meditation session. Breathe in and out. If your mind starts to wonder, gently come back to focusing on your breath.
Don’t be surprised or discouraged if those restless thoughts keep coming back. Improvement comes with time and practice. In our busy modern lives, a restless mind can be managed with the right steps.